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SDA Boconni Sample Winning Essay – 1
SDA Boconni Essay 1: What interests and occupations do you pursue in your free time?
In my free time, I primarily pursue 2 interests – Oriental belly dancing and Costume designing.
Oriental belly dancing – As a kid growing up in a traditionally rich Bengali culture, I was always interested in pursuing various forms of arts such as painting, singing, dancing, and creative writing. While I enjoyed engaging in all of them, dancing became a passion for me. I continued to practice and learn various dance forms till my undergrad.
I started Oriental belly dancing around 3 years back and since then my crew and I have performed in all the metro cities in India. In last 3 years, I have performed solo as well as with my dance group in multiple public events. My passion for dancing motivated me to inspire and educate others about dancing and appreciate dancing as a way of life to stay fit and confident. Currently, I am a part of troupe members in Payal’s Dance Academy and I have started teaching belly dance enthusiasts across various locations.
Costume designing – My family have a textile business for almost 30 years now. We have our own manufacturing units for clothes and apparels. This is where my fascination with fashion and costume design began. I would often visit textile showrooms with my father to know how latest fashion trends influenced the dynamic of textile demand and supply. I am an avid reader and follower of fashion magazines and designers.
The blogs and regular field trips taught me a lot about fashion industry and inspired me to consult my father on the latest trends. Not only family business, I also consult an International Belly Dance Academy in costume designing and fashion accessories for their various performances. As a passionate dancer, I was able to bring in my fashion expertise in advising the Academy on latest trends and helping them in procuring designer costumes for their domestic as well as International events.
SDA Boconni Essay 2: What do you think you gained from your university studies? Conversely, What important things do you think your studies lacked?
My undergrad university has taught me and shaped me to be who I am today, it was culmination of a many firsts in my life.
My undergrad education was the first time I came out of my home and lived independently in a different state. Before undergrad, I always studied in an all-girls school and graduation was the first experience with a co-ed class. The best thing I learned was from the diverse cultural exposure. We had people all over India with various cultural background. I learned how cultural background influences one’s thinking and discussion behavior. I learned to understand all the diverse perspectives and different views.
As I learned more and more about engineering, my outlook and thought process changed with respect to dealing with problems. I acquired structured and logical way of thinking to deduce solutions for the problems.
As a budding engineer, one thing I felt our university lacked was hands on projects. Most of the learning was classroom based and even practical projects were theoretical in nature. A better laboratory infrastructure would have given us a platform to replicate our ideas and to design more creative solutions in a safer environment and learn by doing. As an Alumni, I would strongly recommend, my undergraduate university to focus on focus more on practical hands on projects.
SDA Boconni Essay 3: Explain the most significant goals that you have achieved so far and the reasons for their importance in your personal growth.
My family came to India as an immigrant from Bangladesh. When my father migrated from Bangladesh to India, he had to deal with a lot of hurdles to bring up four daughters. He went against all the odds to give us the life we deserve and to become a successful businessman that he is now. Growing up, I have always seen people coming and consoling him for having four daughters as in the conservative Indian culture daughters are considered a baggage who will one day marry someone and go out of home. My goal growing up was always to stand up on my feet and make my father proud for everything he has done. Today I am the first engineer in my family and a successful IT professional. All the hard work that I have put in has brought out the positivity inside me and helped me aspire for something bigger in life.
Another significant moment in in my life was three years back when I met with an accident and injured my back. The injuries restricted my movements and I couldn’t continue my passion for dancing. After a lot of discussion and research, I joined Oriental Belly Dancing because it involved smooth fluidic movements as opposed to demanding hard hitting movements in other dance forms. I continued with my interest even with the pain and within six months of joining the academy, I not only recovered from my injuries but also started performing in big events throughout India. After recovering from a serious accident, I regained my lost passion for dancing. These public appearances and stage performances have helped me become a more confident individual. This motivated me to inspire and educate others about dancing and appreciate dancing as a way of life to stay fit and confident.
Now, I have graduated to a dance teacher, and I love doing my bit to spread the love for Belly Dancing. Even though this is a never-ending goal, I want to believe I have inspired few women so far to respect this art and realize the importance of fitness to maintain current active lifestyle.
SDA Boconni Essay 4: Describe you strong points, personal and professional, explaining why you see them as such.
I believe one of my strong points is that, I have a good emotional quotient (EQ) and empathy which helps me get connected with people easily. As a kid growing up in a country where education was highly marginalized to girls, I have seen my father struggling to build girls school and working hard to continue their education. So, a part of my EQ and empathy comes from the family culture and this culture of marginalizing girl’s education pushed me towards community engagement in Kolkata at a very early age. I would always visit nonprofit run schools and talk to diverse student group and make them realize the importance of girl education to realize their full potential.
My second strong point which I acquired through the social outreach work is my communication skills which have helped me craft a successful career for myself. I have leveraged this skill in my professional life to not only successfully work in diverse teams but also confidently lead those teams.
Working as a Business Analyst, I had to interact with clients and capture and communicate business requirements in a very clear and concise way so that there is no scope for miscommunication or misunderstanding. These interactions have taught me a lot in keeping my communication very succinct and coherent. Furthermore, working with diverse cross functional teams I learned a lot about cross collaboration and leading teams with direct or indirect authority. These experiences and learnings have gone long way in enhancing my communication skills further.
Hence overall, I believe emotional quotient, empathy and my communication skills are the strengths which have helped me achieve success so far in my career.
SDA Boconni Essay 5: Describe you weak points, personal and professional, explaining why you see them as such.
Growing up, I always needed a to-do list for my daily activities to be in order and organized. I have made sure to follow the to-do list and it helped me to plan for an activity way before and finish it on time. After becoming a working professional, I have realized that planning everything way ahead doesn’t always help. There are times when we need to deviate or change the plan according to the situation. Initially it took a great deal for me to adjust to such situations where plans are needed to change. I started to panic thinking about the consequences. Under the guidance of my senior at workplace, I have learnt how to respond better to changing dynamics. My manager guided me in managing major project releases that has helped me face my fear and take spontaneous decisions whenever needed. I would still like to improve on that area and have myself prepared when I must take frequent spontaneous decisions without panicking or taking a lot of pressure on my shoulder.
My second weakness is being driven about my goals and setting up high expectations from people around me. Earlier this would often lead to disappointments as I was not cognizant about other capabilities. However, as I started leading diverse teams with varied ambitions and goals, I started setting one on one expectations from everyone so that everyone on the team stays on the same page while not letting me or the team down. No matter how big or small are the goals, I still let my ambitions drive my expectations but with being mindful of the people and the context.
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SDA Bocconi Sample Winning Essays – 2
SDA Bocconi Essay 6: What are the reasons that lead you to apply to the program at this point in your life?
I have 5 years of quality experience with Accenture where I have acquired extensive experience in commodity trading and risk management. I have worked with major oil, gas and finance clients as a Business Analyst to capture and define business requirements, recommend IT solutions and improve projects success metrics.
In these 5 years, I have worked with large cross functional teams and implemented project wide business process improvements. Working with these elite clients has provided me extensive knowledge in physical trading, financial trading, logistics, supply and demand management. After having acquired good experience in commodity trading, now in the short term I want to move towards a career in retail trading possibly towards apparel and textile trading, so that one day I can lead my family’s textile company to international expansions.
But to achieve my envisaged career goals, I need to enhance my understanding of business/management fundamentals. I believe courses such as Management and Organization of the New Product Development, Strategy Execution, Brand Management would help me understand the dynamics of the market and sharpen the skills I have developed over the years.
Hence, I would like to pursue MBA in a reputed school like SDA Bocconi where I would get perspective in leadership, strategy, business planning, marketing and driving international business.
SDA Bocconi Essay 7: What other goals have you seriously considered, apart from the program, for reaching your goals of personal and professional growth?
My family has a successful business in fashion apparels and textile trading. We have our own company “DRP Textile” that specializes in design and manufacturing of women’s and men’s apparels. I have been involved in my family business on a part time basis and improved few areas whenever it is needed. As we are expanding our business locally and trying to reach maximum retailers as possible, so helping my family business would definitely be my first priority.
But I believe with my current knowledge, even though I work diligently in our family business and learn about the end to end product management, it would be difficult to expand it globally in 5 years down the line without any experiential knowledge in International business or consumer behaviour that I can acquire in a reputed program like in SDA Bocconi’s. Working with a reputed International brand in Italy would also help me learn the nuances of fashion industry and implement it in real life setting.
Another possibility is leaving Accenture and looking for internships provided by International brands such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton etc. in India but such an exposure would help me learn about Indian market with renewed, country-specific, localised strategies. I wouldn’t be exposed to the areas such as design management, diverse consumer behaviour etc. which I need to scale my family business expand internationally.
SDA Bocconi Essay 8: Where do you wish to pursue your profession after receiving the MBA?
Having acquired quality experience at a global tech consulting firm such as Accenture, I have a strong grasp on how global businesses work in varied industries. Therefore, pursuing my profession anywhere across the globe would not be huge challenge for me. In a highly globalized world, where companies focus a lot on diversity and inclusivity, I feel I bring great set of technical as well business acumen on the table that will help me position myself well for my desired aspiration anywhere across the globe.
For an aspiring brand manager in fashion industry, I believe Italy as the renowned fashion capital of the world provides me an excellent platform to explore and network with myriad companies in fashion industry and learn the tricks of the trade from the best of the industries. That’s a strong motivation for me to pursue brand management career in Italy and then leverage that rich exposure to take my company global in few years down the line.
SDA Bocconi Essay 9: What are your short term professional goals?
Post MBA, I would like to target a brand management role in a luxury brand. I believe working as a brand manager for a luxury brand will help me learn the nuances of business in fashion industry, provide me the relevant experiential knowledge as well as the professional expertise required in launching, marketing and managing portfolio of brands. As a brand manager, I would acquire good knowledge about making informed business decisions to successfully cater to consumers ever changing needs and preferences.
For an aspiring brand manager in fashion industry, Italy, renowned fashion capital of the world, provides me an excellent platform to explore and network with myriad companies in fashion industry and learn the tricks of the trade from the best of the industry.
Therefore, I strongly believe, studying and working in the fashion capital of the world will provide me good exposure to the fashion industry which I can leverage in the medium to long term in scaling my family’s fashion apparels and textile business.
SDA Bocconi Essay 10: What are your long term professional goals?
My family have a successful business in Fashion apparels and textile trading. We have our own company “DRP Textile” that specializes in design and manufacturing of women’s and men’s apparels.
At present, our business is involved in every step from purchasing of raw cotton from market to manufacturing of ready to wear fashion apparels for men and women both. We have inhouse factories for sizing strong stable thread, weaving, dying, printing, designing, manufacturing and packaging. We take care of everything to produce and sell it to wholesalers and retailers.
In the long term, I aspire to help my family business grow internationally and take over reins of the business one day. I believe the knowledge I acquire over the years in retail industry combined with other aspects will help me make required changes in our textile company.